Are you looking for a job?

August Jobs Report

Image by Leader Nancy Pelosi via Flickr

With the economy still struggling from the recent recession, a lot of people are looking for any job they can find….part-time, something they may be over-qualified for, just anything to bring in some money.  Knowing this is the case, knowing that there are literally hundreds of people applying for every job opening, why would you not do everything possible to make a good first impression?  After all, in this job market, that first impression may be the only chance you get to make any kind of impression.

I speak with job applicants almost every day, most of the time on the phone, but there are the people who just walk in and want to talk about employment.  If you’re just going to show up and expect to talk with us about hiring you, there are a few things you might want to consider.  First, and possibly one of the most important things for you to do on any job hunt, dress appropriately.  Don’t show up wearing shorts and flip-flops.  Don’t come in wearing dirty clothes or with your hair oily and stringy.  I can guarantee you we will not hire someone who comes in looking like that…if you can’t be bothered doing some basic grooming before you come in to ask us for a job, why would we assume you’d do so after we hired you?

Don’t tell us you’re looking for any job you can find, even if that’s the truth.  Be able to tell us why you want to work for us, what you can contribute to our company, why you’d be a good fit.  Yes, this takes some time on your part, but you need to be prepared before going to any job interview.  You will be asked those types of questions.  Saying, “I don’t know.” or mumbling some evasive answer won’t get you the job.  Being able to tell us how we can benefit from hiring you will at least get you considered for a position.

Open availability is a plus.  Don’t come in and tell us you can only work weekdays…this is retail.  We all work weekends and holidays…that’s what you do in retail.  On the other hand, don’t lie to us and tell us you can work any time and then change that once we hire you.  You’ll find yourself with very few hours in that situation.

Speak up.  Shake hands with a firm grip.  Make eye contact.  Smile.  Speak intelligently.  We want to hire you if you can show us that you would be an asset to our company.  Believe me, we see so many people that we wouldn’t hire under any circumstances, that to see someone who manages to impress us is a treat. 

We’re looking for good help.  Have you ever heard that good help is hard to find?  Believe me, it is.    And the sad thing is that it’s really not that difficult to convince us that you can be that good help, but so few people are willing to take the necessary steps.   

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4 Responses

  1. Now if you could broadcast this far and wide, you’d be doing a ton of employers (and future employees) a great service.

  2. When I started my first job hunt at the age of 13 (back then 13 yr olds could flip hamburgers and wait on customers), all the adults told me to show the interviewers I knew about respect, for myself and for others. The lack of it is what your post shows to me. And I see all of it myself. It really has become an epidemic.

    I’m on the other end. During the application and the interview processes, I’m finding the epidemic exists on the other side as well. Maybe if we all work on giving ourselves and others respect, this will turn around?

    • You’re absolutely right…respect, self-respect as well as respect for others, is sorely missing in our society today. It amazes me that people come in acting like we owe them a job just because they want one…funny, I’ve never known the business world to work that way. But you’re right, hiring managers can be just as guilty of not being respecful…we may not be able to change the world by changing our behaviors, but maybe we can affect at least our little corner of it.

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